TWO SOCIAL enterprises from Wrexham have been shortlisted for a national award.

Splash Community Trust, who run Plas Madoc Leisure Centre, and Empower Be the Change have both been shortlisted for this year’s Social Business Wales Awards.

The awards night, being held on Wednesday, September 26 at the City Hall in Cardiff, recognises excellence within the social business sector in Wales. Entrants come from a range of social businesses but all demonstrate a dynamic, entrepreneurial and ambitious attitude that are driving the sector forward.

Stella Matthews from Splash Community Trust: “When Wrexham County Borough Council voted to close Plas Madoc in 2013 there was a public outcry, following the protest a small group formed the Splash Community Trust and re-opened the leisure centre in December 2014. The staff, volunteers and trustees worked together to redevelop the centre into a thriving community hub and over the last eighteen months we have seen our position strengthen. We employ forty four people and make a considerable contribution to the local economy.”

“We are delighted to be shortlisted in the category of 'Social Enterprise of the Year' and that the service we deliver for this area is being recognised.”

Derek Walker, chief executive of the Wales Co-operative Centre, said: “Every year it seems to get more difficult to short list for these awards, the quality of the applications are a testament to all the good work that these businesses are doing. We know the social business sector is growing, our research shows that the sector now employs approximately 40,800 people and is worth an estimated £2.37bn to the Welsh economy.

“These businesses are delivering vital services and creating jobs and economic opportunities across Wales. Looking at the applications there are some really inspirational businesses out there with real growth potential. We wish all our finalists the best of luck and look forward to seeing them at the awards.”